12 Outlets for Technology-Inspired Fun
Accolades heaped upon the Triangle in recent years offer evidence that our region ranks among the country's hottest, most technology-driven areas. Here are 12 places your family can plug into for some high-tech fun and learning.
1. Centennial Campus Library – Raleigh. The James B. Hunt Jr. Library on N.C. State University's Centennial Campus features book-retrieving "bookBots," interactive exhibits, modern study spaces, an Apple technology showcase, the iPearl Immersion Theater and much more.
2. Museum of Life and Science – Durham. This interactive museum offers high-tech exhibits and activities, as well as occasional family workshops.
3. Marbles Kids Museum – Raleigh. Kids learn about technology in a fun and challenging way through the Kid Grid and STEMosphere exhibits.
4. Microsoft Store – Durham. Gaming events, educational workshops, free camps and free Xbox Kinect gaming system trials make learning about technology fun.
5. Apple Store – Durham. Hands-on browsing is encouraged. While parents and older siblings try out new devices, younger Mac users can entertain themselves at a technology table designed just for them.
7. Gamesturz – Raleigh. Gamesturz offers a gaming lounge, video game tournaments and Kids' Night Out activities.
8. N.C. Science Festival – Locations throughout the Triangle. This 16-day festival in April features dozens of tech-centric activities for kids and families.
9. The Iron Yard – Durham. Kids program interactive stories, games and animations, or build their own websites via free classes offered throughout the year.
10. Techsplorers – Chapel Hill. Fun, high-tech courses for kids include Line-Following Robots, Lawn Mower Engines, Intro to Aerospace and Sonic Rangefinder. These courses are offered through weekend workshops or custom events and can be tailored to meet your needs.
11. STEM for Kids – Locations throughout the Triangle. STEM for Kids provides year-round activities in engineering, robotics and computer programming. For any camp offered, children can attend a single half-day workshop or work out a customized schedule.
12. Engineering for Kids – Locations throughout the Triangle. Kids experience technology in a fun and challenging way through weekend classes and parties. The hands-on classes offered at various community centers include Mechanical Engineering, Lego Robotics and Electronic Game Design.
Many of these programs also offer summer and track-out camps. Check out our camp directory for more information.
Robyn Kinsey Mooring is a Durham-based writer and the mother of two boys.
Photos courtesy of N.C. State University and Techsplorers